Blackhawks 4, St. Louis 4
ST. LOUIS (AP) _ Rookie Mark LaVarre scored with 7:34 left in regulation to cap a two-goal comeback and help the Chicago Blackhawks gain a 4-4 NHL tie with the St. Louis Blues Saturday night.
LaVarre, a right wing called up from Chicago’s Nova Scotia farm club in the American Hockey League on Nov. 17, scored his fourth goal in 11 pro games by converting a setup from Al Secord behind the net to tie the game.
Chicago dominated the Blues in overtime, outshooting them 4-1, but failed to beat St. Louis goaltender Rick Wamsley for the winning score. Chicago also held a decided edge in play in the third period, outshooting the Blues 11-3. For the game, they pelted Wamsley with 44 shots.
With Chicago trailing 4-2 going into the third period, center Troy Murray started the rally with his 11th goal on a bounce pass from Ed Olczyk 2:58 into the period. Murray’s shot beat Wamsley on the stick side and from then on, Chicago was in command.
Bernie Federko paced the St. Louis attack with a pair of goals as the Blues, despite being badly outplayed in the second period, scored three times to build the 4-2 lead. Doug Evans opened the scoring with his first goal of the season and Federko and Doug Gilmour followed with goals of their own.
Chicago defensemen Doug Wilson and Keith Brown also scored for the Blackhawks, who are 8-16-6. St. Louis maintained its hold on first place in the Norris Division as it improved to 12-12-5.
LaVarre admitted that there was some luck involved in his late goal.
″The pass from Secord hit the side of the net and deflected right to me,″ LaVarre said. ″I happened to be in the right place at the right time. We knew we had to come out of this with something big because they were in first place and we were in last. We couldn’t afford to dig a bigger hole for ourselves than we already have.″
The Blackhawks’ Bob Pulford agreed.
″This was a big point,″ Pulford said. ″I thought we had some good chances to win the game. Both Denis Savard and Dave Donnelly had good chances in overtime. This is one of the few times this season we had a big game and were able to make a comeback.″
Blues defenseman Charley Bourgeois said he felt St. Louis had let up too much near the end of the game.
″We had them down and let them off the hook,″ Bourgeois said. ″They’re a much improved team from the last time we played them. They’re playing a lot more together.″